Protesters Show Up When Hispanic Leaders Announce Plans to Boycott I-966
Yakima, WA - Members of Yakima's Hispanic Chamber of Commerce plan to organize a boycott of local businesses supporting Initiative 966.
The initiative could block illegal immigrants from receiving public benefits.
About 200 local businesses are involved in the effort to gather signatures in the Yakima area.
Today a few Hispanic leaders met with the media to announce their intentions to boycott those businesses, but some unexpected guests showed up.
The press conference at Millenium Plaza quickly turned into a yelling match between Hispanic leaders and protesters, holding signs, from Grassroots of the Yakima Valley.
"We're going to identify them, inform the community and ask them not to buy there," says Hector Franco of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
He was joined by a few other members from the chamber at the press conference, but they were outnumbered by representatives from Grassroots of the Yakima Valley.
"We just want the laws to be enforced," says Bob West, "We don't want our hard earned tax dollars to go to people who sneak in."
Brad Tidrick owns Tidrick's Quality Transmissions on Ahtanum Road. His business has collected 30 signatures so far.
He says he's prepared to take a hit on his bottom line.
"Yeah, it bothers me that it could cost me revenue. I can't afford it right now, but it's time to get involved. Too many people sit back."
224,800 signatures are needed to get this initiative on the ballot for the next general elections.
The deadline is July 7th.